2D spatiotemporal extreme event in quadratic nonlinear crystal

Raphael Jauberteau
Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell’Informazione, Università di Brescia, 25123 Brescia, Italy / Université de Limoges, Institut Xlim, UMR CNRS 7252, 87060 Limoges, France

Solitonic waves are nonlinear self-sustained waves observable in a large number of conditions and various fields of physics, from electronics to optics via fluidics. Quadratic quasi-solitons have been early predicted by Karamzin et al. [1] and later observed by Torruellas et al. [2]. These types of self-guided beams have been seen, after modulation instability, in 2D spatial structures [3]. More recently, it has been shown that Peregrine solitons, and Akhmediev Breathers, could be obtained in quadratic materials [4].

In this paper we show spontaneous 2D quadratic extreme events, generated and controlled with non-collinear beams. We launched a large collimated beam (R = 200 µm, 30 ps) in a 8X8X30 mm KTP crystal cut for type II second harmonic generation. Beams first experienced a strong self-focusing leading to a stable 2D confined propagation. Because of the spatial walk-off due to the nonlinear crystal anisotropy, the trapped beams come with spatial reorientation, controlable by the initial polarization state. Additional self-confined events can appear in the transverse output pattern by increasing the input peak power. Such nonlinear spatial reshaping of the initial beam can also provide a way to control the apparition of 2D nonlinear periodic structures, a situation that reminds the Akhmediev Breathers solution, only valid in 1D.

These effects could be used to implement all-optical logic functions with ultrafast switching, but also to mimic the effect of a nonlinear saturable absorber able to realize ultrafast temporal pulse reshaping. The self-trapping process acts like a spatial self-cleaning process, which changes a set of initial non-collinear beams into a single one.

[1] Yu. N. Karamzin et al., Sov. Phys. JETP 41,414 (1976).

[2] W. E. Torruellas et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 74, 5036 (1995).

[3] M. Delqué, et al., Optics Comm. 284, 1401–1404 (2011).

[4] F. Baronio et al., Opt. Lett., 42, 1756-1759 (2017).